Frank Trumbauer & Bix Beiderbecke: Clarinet Marmalade
Frank Trumbauer & His Orchestra (With Bix Beiderbecke)
Bix & Tram (JSP Records 9133)
Howdy Quicksell (banjo).
Composed by Nick LaRocca, Eddie Edwards, Tony Sbarbaro and Larry Shields.
Recorded: New York, February 4, 1927
Rating: 87/100 (learn more)
Set to wax earlier on the same day as “Singin’ the Blues,” “Clarinet Marmalade” is notable for a few reasons: Bix, for all of his legendary “cool,” could run with the best of them. Here he blows at breakneck speed while remaining “surefooted as a mountain goat” (to quote Mezz Mezzrow), always sounding original, his tone nothing short of flawless. Note also a short interlude, just prior to Tram’s solo, that borrows from Bix’s composition “In a Mist.” Bix wouldn’t record the piano solo for seven more months, but it was clear that it was long in the works and that his ideas, at least in “Clarinet Marmalade,” were an important part of Bill Challis’ arrangements.
Reviewer: Brendan Wolfe
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Related LinksBixology, an excerpt from a book by Brendan Wolfe
The Dozens: Twelve Essential Bix Beiderbecke Performances by Brendan Wolfe
Remembering Bix by Ted Gioia
Bix Beiderbecke from jazz.com’s Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians